Microsoft Surface Go vs Apple iPad 9.7 (2018): What’s the difference? | Apps & Software

Microsoft has announced a new Surface device, called the Surface Go, and it pitched the tablet squarely at Apple’s iPad.

The new iPad 9.7 (2018) is now the cheapest way to get your hands on an Apple tablet. But how does it compare to entry-level Surface Go, which looks like a Surface Pro but cheaper. Well, to help you figure it out, we’ve compared all the specs and pitted the two against each other.

  • Both have metal constructions and rounded corners
  • iPad 9.7 has silver, space grey, and gold colour options

The iPad 9.7 (2018) and Surface Go feature similar designs in that their both tablets.

The iPad offers a premium metal construction with rounded edges and corners and Touch ID on the front beneath the screen. On the rear, the Apple logo is positioned in the middle, as usual, while the rear camera lens sits in the top left corner. It also has a central Lightning port.

Surface Go also has a metal construction with rounded corners, but it has a built-in kickstand that extends up to 165 degrees, a USB-C (non-Thunderbolt) port, a Surface Connect port, and a micro SD slot under the kickstand. In terms of size, Surface Go is a 10-inch, 1.15-pound touchscreen tablet that’s 8.3 mm thin, while iPad 9.7 measures 240mm x 169.5mm and weighs 469g or 477g, depending on specs.

And finally, iPad 9.7 comes in silver, space grey, and gold colour options. There are no colour options for Surface Go.

  • Surface Go has a 10-inch display with a 3:2 aspect ratio
  • iPad has a 9.7-inch display with a 264ppi

The iPad 9.7 has a 9.7-inch Retina display, which means an LED-backlit LCD screen with 2048 x 1536 resolutions for a pixel density of 264ppi. Surface Go, on the other hand, has a slightly larger 10-inch PixelSense display with 10-point touch support (including Surface Pen support with 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity, low pen parallax, and low latency) and a 3:2 aspect ratio, Microsoft said.

  • Surface Go has 8MP rear, 5MP front cameras
  • iPad 9.7 has 8MP rear, 1.2MP front cameras

The iPad 9.7 (2018) has an 8-megapixel rear camera with a f/2.4 aperture and 1080p video recording capabilities, while the front-facing camera resolution sits at 1.2-megapixels. There is no flash on either camera. Surface Go, meanwhile, has a front facing 5-megapixel HD camera and a rear auto-focus 8-megapixel HD camera. If we’re just looking at specs, the selfie snapper on the Surface Go is a clear winner.

  • iPad 9.7 has A10 fusion chip and embedded M10 coprocessor
  • Surface Go has Intel Pentium Gold Processor 4415Y

The iPad 9.7 (2018) comes with the A10 fusion chip and embedded M10 coprocessor, which is said offer 2x faster CPU and 1.7x faster GPU compared to the A8 chip, used in iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 4. Surface Go has a Intel Pentium Gold Processor 4415Y.

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The iPad 9.7 supports Apple Pencil. There is also two-speaker audio on the new iPad. And it offers up to 10 hours of battery. Surface Go supports the $99 Surface Pen, and it supposedly has a nine-hour battery life. In terms of storage options, iPad 9.7 comes in 32GB and 128GB capacities, while Surface Go is available in 4GB of RAM/64GB of eMMC storage or 8GB of RAM/128GB SSD storage.

Both come in Wi-Fi and xellular models (though Surface Go with built-in LTE won’t be available until later this autumn). Surface Go also supports Windows Hello and works with a new Surface Type Cover ($99 to $129 extra) and Mobile Mouse ($39 extra).

  • iPad 9.7 runs iOS 11 and supports educational features
  • Surface Go has Windows 10 Home in S Mode or Windows 10 Pro

The iPad 9.7 (2018) runs iOS 11, meaning you’ll get an almost identical experience as you do on an iPhone, with additional functions such as split-screen multi-tasking and the Home for any HomeKit-enabled devices. Schools and students can order the new iPad with new education , such as School Manager, which enables schools to manage multiple users – and Apple IDs – on a single device, etc.

As for the Surface Go itself, you can get it with Windows 10 Home in S Mode (upgradable to Windows 10 Home). Alternatively, business and education users can get Windows 10 Pro (configurable to S Mode).

  • iPad 9.7 (2018) starts at $329/£319
  • Surface Go starts at $399

The iPad 9.7 (2018) starts at $329/£319 for the 32GB Wi-Fi only option, stretching up to £449 for the 128GB Wi-Fi and cellular model. Surface Go starts at $399 for the 4GB of RAM/64GB of eMMC storage Wi-Fi only option, while the 8GB RAM/128 GB storage SSD starts at $549.

The decision between iPad 9.7 (2018) and Surface Go will come down to what you want your new tablet for or what you have to spend on it. The iPad 9.7 (2018) is cheaper and is a brilliant tablet that offers a solid, consistent performance. It also supports Apple Pencil and can be outfitted with educations apps. Surface Go, on the other hand, is a bit more, but it comes with full Windows 10 and supports Surface Pen .

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